Chromatic comics

A fun LJ meme: casting various traditionally white comic-book characters as actors of color. There's a good starting point at Fantastic Fangirls, with some examples (my favorite of which is Vanessa Williams as Emma Frost, the White Queen [added later: that one's from bossymarmalade's list]) and links.

Another specific suggestion I like, from liviapenn: D.B. Woodside (Principal Wood from Buffy) as Tony Stark.

The meme has gone beyond comics, too—for example, there's a suggested all-PoC cast for Buffy. I especially like the idea of Gabrielle Union as Buffy and Percy Daggs III (Wallace from Veronica Mars) as Xander.

And then there's the all-female Star Trek reboot recasting, which goes a little far afield from the idea of using living actors in some cases, but I love the idea of Indira Gandhi as Sarek. (And though I'm not familiar with Judith Scott, the photo of her on that page does seem to me to capture rather more of Spock's look than, say, Zachary Quinto's perpetual semi-smirk does.)

4 Responses to “Chromatic comics”

  1. betsyl

    hey jed– you’re giving a white woman credit for doing a linkspam collecting posts done by i suspect primarily women of color.

    one of the ways in which people of color will get more well known for doing the things they do is when people by which i mean at least you and me and probably people in general start talking about them doing it (a thing which sig’s post does) and stop talking about white people talking about them doing it (which is the thing your post is doing).

    (also? mt’s lj signin doohickie is borked. open element not found or something.)

  2. Jed

    Hi, Betsy — thanks for the comment.

    I agree that the issue that you’re describing is an important one. And linking to white people’s discussion of something rather than the original discussion by people of color is a mistake that I’ve made in the past and may make again in the future (despite my best intentions to avoid doing that), so I appreciate your being willing to call me on it, and I hope you’ll do so again if I do it again.

    That said, in this particular instance I disagree that that’s what I was doing.

    I did, it’s true, mention, without attribution, one example pointed out in Sigrid’s post. I’ve now added attribution and link for that example, as I should’ve done in the first place. I’m sorry not to have done so before; thank you for prompting me to do that.

    But in my original post, I included three links to specific people’s pages; that’s nearly half of the links in Sigrid’s entry, and it’s the ones I liked the best. So I don’t think I was failing to link to the original material.

    And I think that the problem you’re describing most often takes the form of linking to a white person’s discussion of an issue and giving that white person credit for ideas that were originally espoused by people of color, who are getting ignored. Whereas in this instance, I linked to a white person’s list of links. In that entry I linked to, Sigrid doesn’t do much discussion of the meme; mostly she just provides examples and links. And I didn’t credit her with creating the meme or any instances of it; I just said that her list of examples and links is a good starting point.

    (If I had said “Wow, look at the super awesome job this white person did of curating and contextualizing and summarizing some unimportant stuff thrown together by people of color,” then I would totally agree with you; that would have been bad. But I don’t feel that that’s what I did here. If it sounded like that’s what I was doing, then I definitely apologize; I didn’t mean it to sound like that, and will try to avoid sounding like that in the future.)

    Then, too, I don’t know whether the people who put together those recasting pages that Sigrid and I linked to are PoC or white. The only person I know in RL who’s done a recasting (though I didn’t link to it) is white. Like you, I’m guessing that some or most of the people doing the recastings are people of color, but I can’t tell for sure from their LJs. So I’m not sure whether Sigrid or I were linking to people of color or not.

    So . . . although I agree that this is an issue that’s worth paying attention to, and I do appreciate your concern about it (truly—that’s not sarcasm), I don’t think that I actually did the thing you’re talking about here.

    That said, I know it’s easy for the person who does something wrong to be unwilling to admit that they did something wrong. So if, after seeing my response here, you still feel that I behaved badly here, let me know.

  3. Jed

    PS: Sorry about the LJ signin problem. MT has weird intermittent issues with authentication. I’ll see if I can do anything about it, but I suspect I can’t, alas. 🙁

  4. betsyl

    hm. thank you for your explanation. that makes sense to me; i retract my comment.


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